People always ask me for marketing advice. With technology constantly growing, changing, evolving, it feels impossible to keep up with it all, but there are five common mistakes I continue to see businesses and entrepreneurs making when it comes time to market their businesses. If you ever feel like your speaking into the void and hoping someone bites back, this post is for you! A lot of these mistakes require only simple fixes, it just means we need to really be thoughtful, mindful, and snare about how we are putting ourselves and our businesses out there and how that can attract clients (the right ones) to us and our work!
1.) Stop doing what everyone else is: from logos to colors, designs to images, everything looks the same. We continue to look at what everyone else is doing for inspiration and all of a sudden we all look the same (trust me, this trap can get me, too!) I have a saying, “head down, eyes up.” I want to keep my head down to others work and my eyes on what’s important, what sets me apart, and why I am different than the sea of others in my industry. It’s human nature to want to blend in, (hello, awkward feelings of wanting to sit with the cool kids at school) but to be a successful business you MUST differentiate. Only dead fish go with the flow, don’t be a dead fish.
2.) Our “about me” sections become a place for our to toot our own horns or explain the obvious. We want to shout that we won all of these awards and have all of these features, but do our clients even understand them? Do they know what the acronyms are or what the accolades mean, or even what the heck we are saying? Probably not. Do you waste your time stating the obvious? “I love documenting people in love…” Well, duh, you’re a wedding photographer. I hope you love what you do, moving on. If you need help creating an epic “about me” page, I recorded a free training with a worksheet, you can get them here. (Just sign up for instant access and you can download!)
3.) We are speaking to the void and hoping someone, somewhere bites. Somewhere along the way, we thought our social media accounts should become a mountain we would scream off of, we stopped trying to talk to the people we were trying to reach and started shouting into the void. Your messaging might be falling on deaf ears if you aren’t taking the time to think about who your ideal clients are and how you really, actually need to reach them (and how you would speak to them if you were face to face with them!) Stop shouting from the roof tops, start treating your content like a conversation over coffee, okay?
4.) Our pricing only sets us up to be price shopped. Oh, the glorious pricing dilemma, it’s age old and haunts each of us. Remember how we all blend in? Our “about me” sections aren’t telling people why we are different, and we all look the same? Yeah, that’s the recipe to being price shopped. We spend too much time on our websites and Instagram feeds and we forget that our communication needs to be as well thought out and designed as the stuff we post on the world wide web. When we drop the ball on those initial inquiries we are inviting our potential clients to price shop us and that’s just what they will do!
5.) We think there is a quick fix for everything. Instead of taking courses or doing the hard work to set ourselves up for success, we think that if we spend a few hundred dollars here and a few hundred there on advertising, our inboxes will fill with inquiries. Guys, I hate to break it to you, but you want to reach your ideal clients, not just any clients. Instead of wasting money on major websites, spend your time really fine tuning your marketing messaging, your brand, your vision, and your communication! There is no quick fix for the inquiry game, don’t let people trick you into believing that there is.